Former AFL player Chris Judd has backed the AFL’s decision to ban Hannah Mouncey from last year’s draft over her trans status.

After the league decided against allowing her to play, she was last month cleared to participate in women’s AFL at the state level.

Judd said the AFL was right to block Mouncey from the draft, though he acknowledged the issue needed to be treated sensitively, News.com.au has reported.

“It’s an issue that’s got to be tackled with sensitivity because of the personal journey the transgender community goes through, which is something we’ll forever find hard to understand,” Judd said.

“That doesn’t mean that it should change the fairness of women’s sport or potentially the safety if you’re playing a contact sport.

“Purely, the level of testosterone that transgender women grow up with for 20-plus years puts them at a distinct advantage to put down muscle bulk, create power that other female athletes don’t have, and I think the AFL were right in not allowing Hannah to play in the AFLW.”

Mouncey announced on social media when she received clearance to play in AFLW again.

“While I wholeheartedly thank those who supported me through this time, I will not and I think it would be inappropriate for me to thank the AFL for allowing me to do something open to every other Australian,” she posted.

The league has been working to finalise a policy on trans players, calling on legal, medical, sports and human rights experts for input.

“We are committed to inclusion, and want all Australians to be able to play or participate in our game,” said general manager of inclusion and social policy Tanya Hosch.

“These are complex issues and we are considering expert opinion, international frameworks and feedback from the communities that are impacted by our decisions.”

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